Author Archives: Joseph Antonioli

About Joseph Antonioli

Senior Curricular Innovation Specialist

Friday links – August 16, 2013

New Animated PNG Creation Tools Intend To Bring APNG Into Mainstream Use: While grainy GIF images can have entertaining uses, they aren’t the ideal animated image format due to lack of full color support and an alpha channel [for varied transparency]. Animated PNG doesn’t have these faults and has been available and incorporated in quite a few browsers since roughly 2004.

10 ways tech support has changed since the 1980s: Over the past 30 years, IT has seen some monumental changes — and they’ve had a huge impact on the field of tech support. See if you remember the way it used to be.

Touch Laptop Forecasts: Only 10-15% of laptops sold this year will be touch-enabled. Sales of touch-enabled Dell and HP laptops are declining, but Lenovo’s touch laptops will be 50% of their sales in the next 2-3 years.

What to Expect in WordPress 3.7 and 3.8: The 3.7 update will come in October and feature better internationalization support while 3.8 is planned for the end of the year and will include an overhaul of the admin interface and a new Twenty Fourteen theme. If you have thoughts on improving the dashboard take their survey.

Web Development

The New IE11 Developer Tools: Microsoft has improved the script debugger, added a memory analysis tool, and cleaned up the display of inherited styles in the DOM explorer.

uCSS and CSS Dig: Two tools that can be used to crawl a website and produce reports to help us clean up unused and redundant CSS declarations. This might be helpful in organizing our own stylesheets.

Libraries & Librarians

NPR’s Bob Mondello gave a nostalgic, sometimes humorous view of libraries last week: Libraries’ Leading Roles: On Stage, On Screen And In Song

Have online journals evolved beyond their readers? “… science has become abstracted away from practitioners. It has disappeared from the tangible world as journals have disappeared from tables, desks, and waiting rooms. …”

Other

Google’s “Opt-out village” (from The Onion) –

Wiki Wars: The ten most controversial Wikipedia pages (from CNN)

Friday links – August 2, 2013

Flipped Classroom

Created by Knewton and Column Five Media

University of Oregon Ripple: An open source mobile audience participation application.

Web Content

Universal Analytics and user-centric analytics: What Google’s new Universal Analytics platform is doing and what it might be positioned to do in the future to track individual users across multiple devices.

Social Media in Higher Education: A curated Flipboard of articles from the last month on this topic, with many focusing on analytics.

4 Tips From Google To Make Your Website More Compelling: Resist organizing content according to pre-formed taxonomies of ideas and try to think from the user’s perspective–then make sure to test and test again with real users.

Higher Education Search Analysis Q2 2013: Good news for Middlebury! Searches for higher education resources with a strong relation to the liberal arts and a residential location were up compared to last year.

Facebook adds embedded posts

Google launches real-time analytics API beta

Matt Mullenweg: State of the Word 2013: Matt discusses the upcoming 3.6, 3.7, and 3.8 versions of WordPress. The release video for 3.6 is at about 7:00 and features native audio and video embed support and a better revision browser. 3.8 will include a redesigned administration interface and is slated for release this December.

 

Web Development

Protect Your Website From Its Embedded Content: Security considerations for the new sandbox and seamless attributes to the iFrame element.

Facebook’s Huxley and the BBC’s Wraith: UI testing tools that compare screenshots of your web application and lets you know if things change that you aren’t expecting to change.

Google PageSpeed Insights: Updated to include tips for mobile speed improvements.

Reading

Students Prefer Print for Serious Academic Reading: A study that will be published in College & Research Libraries shows that while students read for pleasure on devices, they prefer print for academic work. Among other reasons, this preference may owe to print being a less distracting medium, with easier ways to highlight and take notes.

The Professor Who Declared, It’s J.K. Rowling: Stylometry software was used to help build the case that J.K. Rowling penned crime novel The Cuckoo’s Calling under a pseudonym. The comments to this article are great reading, too.

Friday Links – May 31

Emdbedding Digital Literacies and enabling change – Report form the “Changing the Learning Landscape” London Event

The Internet of Things – The Internet of Things has emerged as one of IT’s hottest trends of 2013. We have a great set of resources to help you figure out how it can help your business.

Why is Science Behind a Paywall? – The evolution of and economics behind the current model of scholarly communications.

What’s new in MOOCs? “Coursera is recasting itself as a platform for credit-bearing courses that would be offered to students enrolled at multiple campuses within a public-university system.”

Staff matters. “Another side-effect of the executive belief that ‘life is elsewhere’ is that staff members aren’t utilized in transformational efforts. In the pigeonholing that can take place between HR and executive leaders, staff can be overlooked.”

Friday Links – May 17th

Markham Nolan: How to separate fact and fiction online | Video on TED.com

~13 minute video talk by a journalist showing how news organizations verify information posted by users on the web (tweets, photos, videos) using technology such as Google Earth, etc.

How to Read a Book

Did you find an odd box with pieces of paper inside? It might be a book! Some of them still have real pages—and I’ll show you just how to read one.

The Business Value of Google Glass and Wearable Computing – Wearable computing is an emerging technology that’s affecting both the consumer and enterprise space.

Predatory Publishers Strike Back
Predatory publishing is what happens when open access publishing is subverted by manipulation, exploitation, and spammer mentality. Jeffery Beall is a librarian who uses his blog to expose predatory publishers, and they would rather he didn’t. Beall has written a Nature column piece  about predatory publishing, and his blog is Scholarly Open Access.

Moodle Maintenance on Saturday, May 4th, from 3am-7am

From our Moodle host:

Good afternoon,

I am writing to notify you of a pending planned downtime to enable Remote-Learner’s technical support team to upgrade the configuration of your Moodle Private Cloud Service (MPCS).  Please be aware of the following:

  • Planned downtime window for your site(s) is Saturday, May 4, 2013 – 3am to 7am EDT.

  • Your site(s) will be unavailable for four (4) hours while the MPCS upgrade occurs.

The MPCS upgrade will enhance our ability to provide effective support and maintenance of your Moodle server.  We will not be upgrading or changing the version of your Moodle or ELIS site(s) during this process.  Thank you in advance for your cooperation and understanding as we continue to improve our ability to provide you the best service possible.

Sincerely,

Rod Deter, Vice- President of Client Services

Be Our Guest…

Yes, I went there, but dancing houseware aside we are very happy to announce the launch of our new Guest System for Middlebury College. This service will allow people who do not already have a relationship with the college to create a username and password that can be used to access some of our web services.

Screen shot 2013-04-03 at 3.33.07 PMNow a guest lecturer can be added to a Moodle course. Collaboration with colleagues from other institutions can happen in a WordPress site. A resident of Middlebury can create a page that shows them the latest athletic scores next to a list of on campus events.

What guests will have access to
Course Scheduler (can create schedules, but not email them)
Portal (can customize their layout)
Commenting on WordPress (sites.middlebury.edu)
Moodle sites open to anyone with a Middlebury login (placement tests)
Can submit and track their tickets in Web Helpdesk

What guests can be given access to
Can be made contributors/authors/editors of WordPress sites (sites.middlebury.edu)
Can be made teacher/students of Moodle sites.
Can be made editors of wikis (mediawiki.middlebury.edu)

What guests will not have access to
Editing in Drupal (www.middlebury.edu, www.miis.edu, museum.middlebury.edu)
Creating GO links
Creating a WordPress site
Public computers
Wireless internet
Printing
Course Hub
MiddFiles
Uploading to MiddMedia
Ride Board

This list may change over time as new services are added and new needs are identified.

You may test the new Guest System yourself by browsing to https://middguests.middlebury.edu/ and using a non-middlebury.edu or non-miis.edu email account.

Moodle Infrastructure Maintenance – Thursday, March 7

From our Moodle host:

Dear Valued Client,

In the past few weeks, some of our clients have been the target of Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks. These attacks have led to outages for other clients who shared the same internet access points.

To help us detect and prevent this type of attack in the future, Remote-Learner needs to move a critical piece of security infrastructure. The reconfigured hardware will reduce the probability of a successful attack and improve access to the rest of our system during an incident.

We will implement this change during a very brief maintenance window this Thursday, March 7, 2013 at 11:59 PM CST. While the service interruption should not last longer than a couple of minutes, there is a small chance we will require up to 15 minutes.

Thank you for your understanding.

Sincerely,

The Remote-Learner Team